Home Business Ideas
While there are countless ways to start a home-based business, here are 10 of the most approachable home business ideas to consider:
Sell handmade products
Purchase products in bulk and sell them online
Start a dropshipping business
Start a print-on-demand business
Purchase an existing ecommerce business
Start a subscription box business
Teach online classes
Start a service-based business
Sell digital products online
Build an online following that you can monetize
1. Sell Handmade Products
Do you love to create things at home? If you love crafts or art, why not sell your handcrafted products online? For example, you could:
Create pieces of art
Make homemade food
Design and sew clothing
Knit clothes and blankets
Craft wooden furniture
Whatever you like to create, selling handmade products is a great way to turn a passion into a work-from-home business opportunity.
There are two main ways to start selling handmade products online:
Sell through a marketplace such as Etsy
Create your own online store using a platform like Shopify
That said, you could also sell via both channels with Shopify’s Etsy integration.
Small Business Ideas from Home: Shopify Handmade
If this home business idea has caught your eye, start by writing a list of everything you could create. Then, do some online research to see what other people are selling.
2. Start a Dropshipping Business From Home
If you like the idea of running an online store, but you’re not sure what to sell, consider starting a dropshipping business from home. Plus, this is a home business idea with low startup costs.
Dropshipping is a type of ecommerce in which sellers don’t need to purchase or store the products they sell. Instead, sellers partner with dropshipping suppliers who manage the inventory and ship products directly to customers on the seller’s behalf.
Check out the image below to see the dropshipping business model in action:
Pretty cool, right?
The best part is that starting a dropshipping business from home is as easy as 1-2-3 thanks to dropshipping apps like DSers.
Here’s why: You can use DSers to start selling drop shipped products online today — just sign up for Shopify, install the Dsers app, and search for products to add to your store.
3. Start a Print-on-Demand Business From Home
Similarly, if you like to create art and eye-catching designs but don’t want to make products yourself, you could start a print-on-demand business from home.
Print-on-demand is a type of dropshipping in which you can sell products that are customized with your designs, such as:
Apparel: T-shirts, hoodies, leggings, yoga pants, etc.
Footwear: Sneakers, boots, flip flops, etc.
Accessories: Jewelry, watches, phone covers, bags, bottles, face masks, notebooks, stationery, etc.
Homeware: Mugs, towels, bedsheets, cushions, blankets, throws, etc.
Art: posters, wall hangings, stickers, magnets, etc.
Electronics: Headphones, speakers, etc.
Check out some common print-on-demand products in the image below from Printful:
Printful Print-on-Demand Products
To start this work-from-home business idea, sign up for a Shopify account and choose a print-on-demand app to install, such as:
4. Purchase Products in Bulk and Sell Them Online
Another way to sell products online is to buy products in bulk — also known as ‘wholesale’ — and sell them individually.
When you purchase products in bulk, you can get a lower cost-per-unit than if you buy them individually. Then, when selling the products one-by-one, you’re able to increase the prices to create a profit margin.
So, where can you buy fantastic goods in bulk?
Start by researching products on business-to-business (B2B) ecommerce marketplaces like Alibaba and Handshake.
Buy Products in Bulk on Handshake
You can then create an online store with Shopify to sell your products to consumers.
Plus, instead of selling products individually to consumers, you could also purchase products in bulk and sell them to retailers in smaller quantities — this is called wholesaling.
5. Purchase An Existing Ecommerce Business
If you don’t have the time — or the inclination — to set up a home-based business from scratch, you could always buy an existing home business opportunity via the Exchange marketplace.
This website facilitates the sale of ecommerce businesses in a range of niches. Plus, you can buy an established business or a relatively new business.
Buy a Business on the Exchange Marketplace
This may sound pretty complicated at first, but in practice, it’s pretty straightforward.
Start by browsing the home business opportunities listed on Exchange. When you find a business you like, consider reaching out to the buyer to find out more information. Then, if you decide to purchase the business, Exchange will facilitate the… well, exchange.
How it Works: Exchange Marketplace
On the other hand, if you want to start businesses but you’re not interested in growing them to their full potential, you could create and sell ecommerce businesses on Exchange.
It’s also possible to ‘flip’ businesses — or to put it another way, buy a business, improve it, and then sell it for a profit.
Small Business Ideas from Home: Website Flipping Process
6. Start a Subscription Box Business From Home
Why sell one product at a time when you can sell a bundle of products every month to the same person? This is what subscription box businesses like Birchbox do.
Online Business Ideas from Home: Birchbox Subscription Boxes
Plus, Google Trends shows how interest in subscription boxes has boomed in recent years:
Google Trends: Subscription Boxes
This home business idea is a fantastic way to grow a sustainable income, thanks to the recurring revenue generated by ongoing purchases.
You can sell almost anything as a subscription box, too, such as:
Homeware and kitchen gadgets
Information products (such as up-to-date industry reports)
Food, such as snacks or sauces
What’s more, you don’t necessarily have to sell products — you could also rent them. For example, Haverdash rents clothes.
Online Business Ideas from Home: Haverdash Clothes Subscription
To get started with this home business idea, sign up for Shopify and use the built-in subscription management tools.
Starting a Small Business From Home Ideas: Shopify Subscription Management
7. Teach Online
If you have in-demand skills or knowledge and a talent for teaching, consider sharing your knowledge via online video calls
Popular subjects taught online include languages, maths, science, and business. But there are no limits to what you can teach, so you could also teach things like music, sewing, or even DIY!
According to PayScale, most online teachers earn between $10.18 and $39.87 per hour, depending on their level of experience.
Payscale Online Teacher Pay
There are countless online teaching marketplaces that will help you to connect with students and manage your classes, such as:
Plus, there are plenty of feature-rich online teaching platforms to help you create incredible virtual learning experiences, such as:
8. Start a Service-Based Business From Home
The need for digital services is rampant — from designers and developers to digital marketers and doodlers, there’s a need for virtually every talent.
If you’re wondering what service you can offer, here are 20 service-based home business opportunities to consider:
Photo or video editor
Social media manager
Digital advertising manager
Data entry clerk
Some of these home business ideas offer more income potential than others. So, make sure to do your research to choose the right service-based home business idea for you.
To get started, consider signing up to a freelance marketplace like People Per Hour, Upwork, or Fiverr.
At Home Business Ideas: Upwork Freelance Marketplace
You could also create a website and then find clients independently by networking and pitching.
9. Sell Digital Products Online
If you’ve mastered a particular skill or subject and don’t want to teach online or provide a service, you could package your knowledge and experience in a digital product.
Selling digital products is a fantastic home business idea because — like dropshipping — there’s no need to source or manage inventory or ship products to customers. Plus, once you’ve created a digital product, it doesn’t cost anything to replicate.
So, what types of digital products can you sell? Here are 20 to consider:
Written templates (résumés, scripts, marketing emails, etc.)
Editing presets (for videos, images, or audio)
Audio (music, samples, podcasts, etc.)
Research (statistics, reports, etc.)
For example, Gabriella and Andrew Morrison sell courses and house plans to help people build tiny houses on their website Tiny House Build.
Sell Digital Products: Tiny House Build Example
10. Build An Online Following That You Can Monetize
If you love creating content, you could build an online following around a particular topic or niche and monetize your audience.
If you’re interested in this home business idea, you need to choose a way to build an audience. Now, there are many ways to create a following online — for example, you could:
Grow an Instagram following
Build a YouTube audience
Create a blog and grow your readership
Grow a Twitch following
Build a TikTok following
Once you have a relatively large following or plenty of website traffic, how can you make money? In essence, there are three ways to monetize an online audience:
Brand sponsorships: Get paid to promote a company’s products (also known as ‘influencer marketing.’
Affiliate marketing: Promote a company’s products or services and earn a commission.
Sell products: Create and sell physical or digital products to your audience.
For example, Adam Enfroy built a blog that reviews many software products.